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Amusement Park Research

Lesson Template for Online Research Spreadsheet Assignment


 California Theme Parks

Grade: 4

Subject: Math


 Students will look online at five theme parks in California.  The assignment is to find out how much it costs for admission for each member of their family.  They are to find out which park is in the median price range for their family.  Each student will graph the information for their family using excel.  Then as a class we will graph which theme park was chosen by most students.

(Adapted from



Subject Matter: This lesson is appropriate for 4th and 5th grade mathematics.  The following standards are addressed for each grade level.


 1.0 Students organize, represent, and interpret numerical and categorical data and clearly communicate their findings.

1.1 formulate survey questions; systematically collect and represent data on a number line; and coordinate graphs, tables and charts
1.2 identify the mode(s) for sets of categorical data and the mode(s), median, and any apparent outliers for numerical data sets

Grade 5:
Statistics, Data Analysis and Probability
1.0 Students display, analyze, compare, and interpret different data sets, including data sets of different sizes.

1.1 know the concepts of mean, median, and mode; compute and compare simple examples to show that they may differ
1.4 identify ordered pairs of data from a graph and interpret the meaning of the data in terms of the situation depicted by the graph

Technology:  The technology standards that are addressed in this lesson are: Standard 5-Technology research tools-students use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources  Students use technology tools to process data and report results.



Big 6 Skills 

Essential Question

Students are to evaluate admission costs for their family to 5 California Amusement parks, and find the one that is in the median price range.  (for the math assignment)


Create a graphic organizer as a part of task definition in order to help students brainstorm ideas and organize concepts and ideas.

1. Task Definition 
1.1 Define the information problem 
1.2 Identify information needed in order to complete the task (to solve the information problem) 

Subsidiary Questions

Students are then to look at the attractions offered at each of the parks, and make a decision on which one they think is the best deal for the money.  They will compare and contrast the featured attractions at two of the parks that they wish to visit. (Using a Venn Diagram)

2. Information Seeking Strategies 
2.1 Determine the range of possible sources (brainstorm) 
2.2 Evaluate the different possible sources to determine priorities (select the best sources) 

Student Tasks



Internet Data Collection: (List websites and describe data you want students to collect for research and comparison in Excel).

for six flags they can pick either Vallejo, or Magic Mountain

Disneyland Park-Anaheim, California

Where to Coast - Paramount's Great America

Ticket Prices Information (Santa Cruz Boardwalk)

Park Fast Facts (Universal Studios)

After the students have searched the websites and calculated the cost for their family for each of these 5 amusement parks.  They are to arrange them in order from least expensive to most expensive.

Then they will pick two of the parks they wish to visit, and they will compare and contrast the available features, such as how many roller coasters, and other attractions.  They will compare and contrast the two parks using a Venn Diagram.

Each individual students price data will be entered into a class Excel Spreadsheet Database, and we will be able to see the results recorded, and be able to graph which parks were selected, and see the outcomes visually.


3. Location and Access - Locate the Data
3.1 Locate sources (intellectually and physically) 
3.2 Find information within sources 

4. Use of Information - Collect the Data
4.1 Engage (e.g., read, hear, view, touch) the information in a source 
4.2 Extract relevant information from a source 

5. Synthesis - Create the Spreadsheet Picturing the Data in Excel
5.1 Organize information from multiple sources 
5.2 Present the information 


Students will present what they found out about the attractions, and costs.  They will describe some of the attractions that interest them, and the other family members at the parks, etc. 

 Some parks will be a better deal for a family (for example if a family has toddlers, Disneyland might be better for them than Six Flags because there is a height requirement for the rollercoaster’s at six flags, whereas in Disneyland the rides are pretty much for everyone.

Students are to show their calculations on the costs and label them accordingly.  Also, the Venn Diagram needs to be filled out correctly and completely. For the presentation they should be able to explain which park they think is a better deal, and has the most attractions that interest their family


6. Evaluation 
6.1 Judge the product (effectiveness) 
6.2 Judge the information problem-solving process (efficiency) 


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